Farmer, veteran Holman enters County Executive race
Chris Holman, a Portage County farmer and U.S. Army veteran, has announced his candidacy for County Executive.
He joins County Board Supervisor Matt Jacowski, District 22, and Jami Gebert, Executive Administrative Assistant to the County Executive, in the bid for the post. Holman’s entrance into the race forces a primary election for the position in February 2018.
“Though I have involved myself in local government and participated in some work at the county level, I will be new to this position and to county government,” he said. “That said, I am not new to politics. I have met with state and national representatives for years, and we have discussed everything from healthcare to corporate consolidation to renewable fuels and energy….
“I will bring a fresh perspective to the County Executive’s office, and I will lead the county working alongside the County Board and staff members, as they are the ones who actually get the work of the county done,” Holman said.
Holman’s experience, he said, is working on a nonpartisan basis, for family farms in central Wisconsin and beyond. He spent nearly a decade as a university lecturer including teaching stints at University of Wisconsin-Madison and UW-Stevens Point. He currently serves on the Wisconsin Farmers Union board and the National Farmers Union board.
In addition, he spent nearly two years working with a committee of fellow farmers and others to update Portage County’s Farmland Preservation Plan. He said he understands the nature of bureaucracy and how to run a business.
In his campaign, he said, he will focus on five priorities:
– Following the work started on the Farmland Preservation Committee;
– Working with areas in the county “struggling to survive and collaborate with them to identify creative solutions;”
– Providing support and resources to municipal governments;
– Working “to balance the practical with the ideal with the County Board and county staff” as it relates to budgeting; and
– “Through a comprehensive, open, and inclusive process, I will evaluate the position of County Executive to determine if it is the best option for the county,” he said.
“Together, we can ensure that the county is working as well as possible,” Holman said.